Day 4 – Isla Roatan, Honduras
Mahogany Bay is a great port and removed from any “real” part of the island. The location is great. We got a late start since we didn’t have an excursion planned. There was one other ship in port with us today, Carnival Conquest. This was the only time we saw another ship, all of our other ports of call we were the only ones in port. We were in port from 8am until 6pm, because of this we decided to split our day in two halves, the first part we would do some shopping, go back to the ship for lunch, and then go to the beach which worked out very well for us. Gripe #1 I don’t like the trend of building the shop (Dufry Duty Free) at the entrance to a port (here and Cozumel) that everyone has to funnel through. It’s annoying and if you have personal space issues or are claustrophobic I could see where it could make some one nervous. Other then that one complaint the port area is very nice. The typical shops dot the port, though they do have a nice Christmas store and an area with some “local” crafts. Back on the boat I got to take part in the Lido Buffet for the first time since we missed lunch embarkation day, had the BBQ on day 2, and were on excursions the previous 2 days. Crowding was not an issue as most were off the boat. I got a chance to try out the burrito bar and it was great. Not as big as say Chipotle or Moe’s but still plenty filling. The chips and all the different salsas were great too. My wife got the Mongolian Wok and hers also looked (and tasted) very good. I can see why these spots are so popular.
The beach here is OK, if not a bit crowded when 2 ships are in port. Save yourself the $12 and walk instead of the “flying beach chair” option, it’s not that bad of a walk. On the beach there are plenty of chairs to be found. The water is very murky where the majority of people are, its amazing (and kind of gross) how clear it gets once you go all the way towards the pier and back to the rear of the swimming area; also it stays relatively shallow 4-5 feet maybe. There is a lot of coral and sea grass underfoot, my buddy and I ventured out to the end of the island and regretted not having our water shoes as the rock and coral was killing our feet. There is a nice secluded stretch of beach just around the end of the island that is worth a swim over to. There also is what appears to be a crew beach fenced off from the rest of the area at the very end towards the pier. It was nice to see everyone in this area having a good time, the crew works hard and they deserve to blow off some steam too. For my fellow beer drinkers, note there are 4 main types of beer in Honduras (Imperial, Cerve Vida, Port Royal and Barena) and they are all pretty much variations of Bud Light/Miller Lite. I love craft beer and unfortunately there is almost none to choose from on a Carnival cruise. Thirsty Frog Red wasn’t too bad, so I’d stick with that.
We got back on the ship about 2 hours before we departed and enjoyed the water slides without much crowd. They are a bit bumpy especially if you’re not wearing a shirt, so be warned, my back was pretty red after a few trips to the bottom. Also, the water at the end is a little deep so be prepared for that as it caught all four of us by surprise the first time down. Dinner in the MDR was great; I believe this night was the alligator fritters which were awesome. I also enjoyed a great bowl of soup each night, this night I had the mushroom soup.